Saturday, September 28, 2013

I Hate Brockville – at least the west end

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I Hate Brockville – at least the west end

Most people have heard of the old horror story “The Nightmare on Elm Street”.  It first appeared in 1984… and since that time it has surfaced again in other places and times.  If you haven’t seen it, it is about some pretty gruesome murders committed by a nasty dude.

Well yesterday it wasn’t murder that being committed but rather a horrendous traffic problem in Eastern Ontario… namely Brockville!

I now hate that part of Brockville… beautiful Brockville… and the section where really well off people live in their beautiful houses.  Maybe add the word despise as well.  Adding to my list… of never to go there again – EVER!  Even the thought of passing that way will almost make me cringe!!!

How could anything bring this kind of reaction in one person?  What could be so bad about a small city in Ontario?  Why?

Well it started this way… when we left Kingston heading east… the first warning was there on the portable signs along the Highway 401.  “The 401 is closed at Brockville”… and they repeated the warning many times over… suggesting that there would be a detour around the area.  My dismissal thought was easy and VERY STUPID as I look back now. Very stupid, very, very, very…. and hindsight hurts my wounded pride… as well as fueling the dislike for the Brockville area!

About one hour after leaving Kingston we arrived at the fatal spot where the entire 401 Highway was blocked off… and all of the busy traffic was channeled off at that exit.  As the traffic had been ‘stop and go’ for well over 45 minutes before that exit, it told us that it was a very busy Friday afternoon – WEEKEND TRAFFIC!

The two fast moving lanes had been merging to one lane before going off on that exit… which then led us to a two lane of traffic heading on to the old highway that runs parallel to the water ways just south of it.  Once on this old road there is no exit for 90% of the way as you are surrounded by rocks and trees and swamp and no possible escape – anywhere.

For the next one hour and a half we were creeping at a speed that made the turtles laugh as they passed us.  Then we stopped all together… Arghhhh!

No traffic was coming to us in the west bound lanes… and then an emergency vehicle of some sort headed east in that west bound lanes. Oh no – an accident ahead!!!!

I don’t know the area at all… and didn’t know that these two lanes of super slow moving traffic were being channeled down to one lane over a very small bridge that appeared to have been under construction over this past year… as there were old, orange traffic control pylons forcing the one lane. BUT they may well have been there because the bridge was too small for the heavy semi-trailer trucks that were in our mass of slow moving traffic.

The small bridge was not far from a Graveyard… were our GPS suggested a possible escape route… which we took quickly after arriving at that spot two hours later.

As we inched along that part of Brockville… we passed the really nice houses that were situated not far from the water’s edge… where nice people were grooming beautiful lawns… where life was sweet and there was no sweat.

I couldn’t really care much for what these nice people were doing… for all I could think of was… “We should have been in the nice hotel in Ottawa one hour ago – instead of this idiot road!!!!”

My hat goes off to the semi-trailer operators.  The kindness and the patience they showed the ram in and out cars being driven but nuts cases around us… was amazing.  These guys and gals were super – Thank You truckers.

My heart went out to the van loads of Scouts that were many… heading from all over the eastern USA to a Scout Jamboree somewhere in Ontario.  All dressed in their sharp looking outfits they sat in the hot vans through that slow traffic.  What a great bunch of kids!

We should have been in Ottawa by 3 PM – so the GPS stated.  It was 6:30 PM when we were given the room key.

DUH!  I chose to go by way of the fast moving 401 instead of the slow paced Highway 7 to Ottawa… ARGHHHHHHH! I am now wearing the Super Dumb Award this weekend… I earned it and will have to wear it for three days.

Now which way do we choose to go home?  401 or 7?

~ Murray Lincoln ~

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